Watching Hellzapoppin'

In the lindy hop universe, the scene from Hellzapoppin’ shines as it’s brightest (and most untouchable) star.

Featuring Whitey’s Lindy Hoppers at the peak of their powers, no other dance sequence combines breakneck speed, high-flying acrobatics, and explosive energy in such a captivating way. It is the definitive lindy hop clip.

If you have not watched it, do yourself a service and watch it now. And then watch it again and again!

“It’s Perfect!” - Norma Miller, the last living member of Whitey’s Lindy Hopper’s.

There’s plenty of support that dancing makes you happy. But watching a video of dancing rarely generates a strong response. Not consistently, anyway. Nowadays, in world of limitless online content, there is always another thing to look at.

Yet nearly 80 years later, Hellzapoppin’ still continues to astonish, inspire, and bring a smile the face of anyone who sees it.

One of my favorite things is sharing Hellzapoppin’ with another generation of future dancers. Even better, sharing it with someone with no interest in dance whatsoever. When I show it, I rarely look at the screen. Instead, I watch people’s faces as they witness the pinnacle of swing dance. Their eyes light up. Jaws drop. They smile and laugh at the audacity of it all. Younger audiences will ask me if it is even real! Sorry kids, there was no CGI in 1941.

So, enjoy Hellzapoppin’ but be sure to share Hellzapoppin’. When you do, I promise it will bring joy to each and every viewer.

MARK KIHARA